getting ready for a new year!

People have been asking and I have good news! My 2018 poster calendars are now READY for you! Some of you will keep one for yourself, others will get one to gift a special someone who makes your days brighter all year round, and the smart ones will  do both.  I hope everyone who hangs one of my year-at-a-glance calendars will feel joy each time they look to my bright designs.

Three designs again, one with words to inspire, though the others tell a story too.  All are ocean related.  The tea cups were photographed at a picnic with my daughter at a local beach (can you guess which shores we lazed upon?).  The octopus is entitled “Look at Me” and how can you not gaze upon her bright colours? The sea star was painted with hope and in honour of the purple sea stars that are struggling with Sea Star Wasting Syndrome (SSWS) along our coast.  How happy was I to notice what seemed like an increase in their numbers this summer on Gabriola! I was also lucky to go out to one of the survey sites in Tofino with Strawberry Isle Marine Research, where they have been getting local volunteers to help them monitor sea stars and SSWS.

2018 at a Glance 12x18 octopus LOOK AT ME

2018 at a Glance 12x18  sea star EVENING WALK2018 at a Glance 12x18 tea at the beach

Here’s hoping the days of 2018 will continue to be good ones for all of you AND all our ocean neighbours!  May the octopus remind you that many hands (arms) make light work (ask for help when you need it!) and also remind you to stay flexible in the year ahead.  May this sea star enjoying a night walk on the beach remind you to slow down in the coming year (and go to the beach more!).  May this tea party at the beach remind you to take time to celebrate each and every moment (use the “good stuff” just for any old day!).

As always, these 12 x 18 inch calendars are printed on 100% recycled paper, so they are big and bright and good for the earth!  Locals can order their calendars directly from me to avoid shipping.  Out of town orders,  please purchase yours in my etsy shop! Special discounts for bulk orders, so contact me if you want to get a bunch for everyone on your holiday gifting list! Don’t they look sweet rolled up with a ribbon?

for the BEES!

The spring sunshine is finally bringing us some heat and everything is growing so lush and green right now.  Flowers all seem to be blooming at once and amongst the bright petals I can hear happy buzzing — it seems the bees are just as happy as we are to finally feel proof that winter is over!  Even though spring seems to have only just begun, somehow summer seems to be nearly here.  Today we went swimming in the sea (first dip of the year!) and later I enjoyed a lazy tea on my deck, damselflies and dragonflies zooming all around.  For dinner we enjoyed a BBQ (on the deck again!) with baby birds chirping in the birdhouse above our heads and hummingbirds keeping us company.  It really does feel like summer….a trick, I know, as June is quite often cool and wet on our island.  But today I am am enjoying this little gift of sunshine!  One can almost forget that tomorrow we all have school and work to return to….

….and meanwhile, while we are working away, so are the bees!  I finished this piece this week in their honour!  Words taken from a vintage children’s book of poems seem to fit the mood, don’t you think?

gathering roses

You can see this wee piece in person at a SWEET group art show here on Gabriola Island.  FOR THE BEES is on display now until June 17th at  Hive Emporium.  Why not stop by and take a moment to see how we have been inspired to pay tribute to these important animals?

hello again!

I had so much fun this weekend coming back to my studio! To my paints! To my oystercatcher photos! To a new batch of these cheerful black birds coming to life on my painting table! I have not finished them, but they really wanted to say “HELLO!” to you all….especially my blog friends that are participating in an Earth Day Art Challenge this weekend!

chatting oystercatchersHere’s a few more pics to see how they came together….come back soon to see them all finished, with their bright orange beaks ready to chat some more!


getting startedso juicy!a bunch

And here is where the magic happens, surrounded by trees and so much spring green! Hummingbirds and swallows zooming outside my window!

Earth Day in my studio

Since this blog challenge was all about art inspired by nature, I have to share a little something my ten year old daughter made on Earth Day (for a friend’s birthday).  Isn’t she sweet?

needlefelted fox made with love by my girl

After the wee fox (and my oystercatcher sketches) were complete, we went out and enjoyed a walk in the forest and found the perfect picnic spot next to a stream.  The sounds of the water flowing and children giggling filled me up more that my yummy organic sandwich could and when the rain started to fall gently through the canopy my heart swelled with the perfection of the moment!

Happy Earth Day everyone! I am so grateful for all that our home provides every day – nourishment and life and so much BEAUTY!  I hope you have done something special to honour your connection to the Earth this weekend and I hope that you will check in to Melodye Shore‘s blog to see how others are expressing their gratitude to the Earth in her Earth Day Art Challenge.

look at me

look at me

My octopus painting is DONE and I wanted to share a sneak peek with you!  I call it “LOOK AT ME” (in part because I cannot stop looking at her)! If you want to get a proper look at her, please come to the SQUARED Art Show happening this weekend on Gabriola!  If you cannot make it, all images go live (and can be purchased online) on Saturday!  My girls also have paintings in the show…Alex is done and Raena is nearly there…here’s a peek at theirs…amazing how somehow all our colours coordinate (and we all painted animals).

three pieces